The American Dream / Queen: Rock The World
'The American Dream': Released on 17 November 2017 as part of the 'News Of The World' 40th anniversary boxed set. Length 56 minutes.
'Queen: Rock The World': First broadcast on BBC 4 on 3 November 2017. Length 59 minutes.
Produced by Simon Lupton and Jim Beach
Directed by Christopher Bird
Thanks to Bob Harris
Queen archivist Greg Brooks
Picture archivist Richard Gray
Additional audio production by Kris Fredriksson and Justin Shirley-Smith
Executive producers for Eagle Rock: Geoff Kempin and Terry Shand
'The American Dream' is a new documentary, based on footage recorded by Bob Harris for a planned TV programme which was never finished. It features footage of the band in the studio, backstage, during soundchecks, and on stage at The Summit, Houston, on 11 December 1977. It also features some backstage footage recorded at The Omni, in Atlanta, on 8 December 1977, and some new interviews with Brian and Roger, as audio only.
Altogether, this is a very good documentary, focusing on 1977 and the 'News Of The World' album and North American tour. Some of the footage in the recording studio and soundchecks is particularly interesting, alongside very good quality footage of the Houston show.
'Queen: Rock The World' is a slightly different version of the documentary, although the two are essentially the same. The main difference is that it includes footage of the Queen + Adam Lambert 2017 North American tour at the start and end, and some narration from Bob Harris. It occasionally features alternative content or shots, and in some cases the footage in 'The American Dream' is in black and white whereas 'Queen: Rock The World' is in colour.
When the 'The American Dream' DVD loads, there is animation of Frank the robot, accompanied by an excerpt of 'We Will Rock You'. The main menu features an image based on the album cover, with various clips from the documentary in the background, and plays the same excerpt of 'We Will Rock You'. It has links to play the documentary, or enter the 'Chapters' or 'Subtitle Options' sub-menus. The 'Chapters' sub-menu is split over two screens, the first plays an excerpt of 'Sheer Heart Attack', while the second plays 'We Are The Champions'. The 'Subtitle Options' sub-menu allows you to choose subtitles in English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, or none, and plays an excerpt of 'All Dead, All Dead'.
The DVD documentary is divided into 11 chapters as follows, with the final chapter marking the end. The content in red is in 'The American Dream' only, while the content in blue is in 'Queen: Rock The World' only.
- Opening credits, with an excerpt of the instrumental version of 'We Will Rock You' and backstage footage from Houston
- Introduction with footage of 'We Will Rock You' from the 2017 Queen + Adam Lambert North American tour, followed by a summary of the programme, and footage from the 'Somebody To Love' promo video
- Excerpt of 'Fight From The Inside', and interviews with Roger and Brian about the album, with video footage of the band swapping instruments during rehearsals
- Interview with Brian about Bingley Hall, and the origins of 'We Will Rock You', with an excerpt of an instrumental version of 'Now I'm Here' and out-takes from the 'We Will Rock You' video shoot
- Interviews with Freddie and Brian about the album's simplicity, with footage of the recording sessions of 'We Are The Champions'
- Footage of the band mixing 'We Are The Champions', and interviews with Freddie about production, Roger about mixing, and John about producing the album themselves
- Interviews with Freddie and Brian about 'We Are The Champions', with footage from the promo video shoot, and album launch party
- Interviews with Roger and Brian about the Sex Pistols, footage of 'Sheer Heart Attack' from Houston, which cuts to the album version, and comments about the track
- Backstage and rehearsal footage for the US tour at Shepperton Studios, with an interview with Brian about rehearsals and playing new tracks, and footage of the band jamming with Roger on guitar and Freddie on drums
- Footage of the band going onstage, interviews with Brian about opening tracks, and footage of 'We Will Rock You' slow and fast versions from Houston
- Excerpt of the album version of 'It's Late' and interviews with Brian and Roger about touring America, with footage of the band travelling and backstage, short clips of the Houston show, and footage of recording vocals in the studio
- Footage of the band backstage after the Houston show, and a group interview about the tour's success
- Audio excerpt of an argument within the band at a soundcheck, with soundcheck photographs, and a group interview about rumours of splitting up
- Interview with Brian about soundchecks, including soundcheck footage of 'Tie Your Mother Down' from the Atlanta show
- Short excerpt of soundcheck footage of 'Spread Your Wings', which cuts to the album version with continued backstage footage
- Interview with the whole band about business affairs and new management, and further footage of the band backstage
- Interview with the whole band about solo projects, then John about songwriting, and further footage of the band backstage
- Interview with Freddie about varying performances and styles, with footage of Freddie recording 'My Melancholy Blues', which then cuts to the Houston show, and footage of the aftershow party in Atlanta
- Rehearsal footage of 'Get Down, Make Love', which cuts to lengthy footage from the Houston show
- Backstage footage from Houston with Freddie talking about the show, and footage of Brian breaking a string during 'Liar'
- Excerpt of the album version of 'Sleeping On The Sidewalk', with footage of the road crew dismantling the stage, and interview with the whole band about business affairs and new management
- Group interview about the future of the band
- Footage of the 'We Will Rock You' slow version from Houston, with further backstage footage
- Footage of the full version of 'We Are The Champions' from Houston, and closing credits
- Narration from Bob Harris about the relationship with the US, and footage of 'We Are The Champions' from the 2017 Queen + Adam Lambert North American tour, with clips from various points in the show, and interviews with Brian and Roger about the collaboration, with closing credits